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Jesus Weeps for Jerusalem under Judgment

41 Now[a] when Jesus[b] approached[c] and saw the city, he wept over it, 42 saying, “If you had only known on this day,[d] even you, the things that make for peace![e] But now they are hidden[f] from your eyes. 43 For the days will come upon you when your enemies will build[g] an embankment[h] against you and surround you and close in on you from every side. 44 They will demolish you[i]—you and your children within your walls[j]—and they will not leave within you one stone[k] on top of another,[l] because you did not recognize the time of your visitation from God.”[m]

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  1. Luke 19:41 tn Here καί (kai) has been translated as “now” to indicate the transition to a new topic.
  2. Luke 19:41 tn Grk “he.”
  3. Luke 19:41 sn When Jesus approached and saw the city. This is the last travel note in Luke’s account (the so-called Jerusalem journey), as Jesus approached and saw the city before entering it.
  4. Luke 19:42 sn On this day. They had missed the time of Messiah’s coming; see v. 44.
  5. Luke 19:42 tn Grk “the things toward peace.” This expression seems to mean “the things that would ‘lead to,’ ‘bring about,’ or ‘make for’ peace.”
  6. Luke 19:42 sn But now they are hidden from your eyes. This becomes an oracle of doom in the classic OT sense; see Luke 13:31-35; 11:49-51; Jer 9:2; 13:7; 14:7. They are now blind and under judgment (Jer 15:5; Ps 122:6).
  7. Luke 19:43 sn Jesus now predicted the events that would be fulfilled in the fall of Jerusalem in a.d. 70. The details of the siege have led some to see Luke writing this after Jerusalem’s fall, but the language of the verse is like God’s exilic judgment for covenant unfaithfulness (Hab 2:8; Jer 6:6, 14; 8:13-22; 9:1; Ezek 4:2; 26:8; Isa 29:1-4). Specific details are lacking and the procedures described (build an embankment against you) were standard Roman military tactics.
  8. Luke 19:43 sn An embankment refers to either wooden barricades or earthworks, or a combination of the two.
  9. Luke 19:44 tn Grk “They will raze you to the ground.” sn The singular pronoun you refers to the city of Jerusalem personified.
  10. Luke 19:44 tn Grk “your children within you.” The phrase “[your] walls” has been supplied in the translation to clarify that the city of Jerusalem, metaphorically pictured as an individual, is spoken of here.
  11. Luke 19:44 sn (Not) one stone on top of another is an idiom for total destruction.
  12. Luke 19:44 tn Grk “leave stone on stone.”
  13. Luke 19:44 tn Grk “the time of your visitation.” To clarify what this refers to, the words “from God” are supplied at the end of the verse, although they do not occur in the Greek You did not recognize the time of your visitation refers to the time God came to visit them. They had missed the Messiah; see Luke 1:68-79.